Perched immediately above Hua Hin’s golden beach sands, with glass, floor to ceiling, wall to wall, Hua Hin Marriott’s signature restaurant, Big Fish & Bar, is all about dining with expansive beach and azure sea views. This contemporary fine-dining restaurant promises international dishes with a distinct focus on fresh seafood fused with Asian elements.
Guests can choose to dine in the open-plan air-conditioned restaurant with its light golden timber and soft blue tones, captivating ocean views, and the live kitchen as entertainment. Or dine on the alfresco terrace, complete with gentle sea breeze and the beach and ocean as a companion.
As the restaurant’s name suggests, seafood features predominantly on Big Fish’s menu. The eye-catching on-ice display of fresh fish, lobster, prawns, squid, clams, plus imported oysters from western France have pride of place in front of the live kitchen. A Catch of the Day blackboard lists the fresh offering along with prices.
For a chance to experience Executive Chef Konrad Renggli and his teams’ food first hand, plus taking in the ambience of this prime location beachfront eatery, the Let’s Eat team made a visit.
Soda-based signature mocktails with either lychee and rose syrup or passion fruit, mint and Thai basil were a refreshing start. A basket of homemade breads and locally sourced and produced butter were served complementary to the table, as was an Amuse Bouche, a bite-sized hors d’œuvre of teriyaki chicken with a passion fruit coulis. An appealing and tasty start to our Big Fish dining journey.
Leading out our three appetisers was a Scallop Ceviche. Very lightly cured scallops with avocado puree, hints of coconut, salmon caviar pearls, and a delicate sprinkling of crushed peanut. This was fresh local seafood handled with the lightest of touch. With its uniform petit cubes of fresh tuna, the Tuna Tartare was mixed with cucumber, sesame, pickled tomato and flavoured with black garlic and miso. Presented with microgreens and delicate edible flowers decoration, it was a picture of freshness.
Our final appetiser was a locally produced creamy Burrata. A glistening white pouch of fresh mozzarella with a creamy centre, paired with a salad of eggplant, basil and pine nuts. A harmonious marriage of Italian flavours to which Chef adds the earthy, pungent, mushroomy and nutty flavour notes of truffle, creating a clear counterpoint in this dish.
The main courses sampled included two seafood dishes plus a grilled Wagyu Beef Striploin – one of two non-seafood menu dishes. The gloriously tender beef was chargrilled to our liking, accompanied by a rich jus, generous dollops of creamed celeriac, fresh corn kernels, plus a popped corn crumble topped with a fine soil of bacon and grilled onion rings. A satisfying plate with premium beef as the hero.
Chef’s pan-fried Red Snapper Fillet was served skin side up, atop a sautee of fennel, bell pepper and edamame, accompanied by a chorizo crumb. From the Catch of the Day board, we sampled Thod Makham or deep-fried local tiger prawns with a delightfully tasty sweet and slightly sour tamarind sauce which added that uniquely Thai essence to the dish.
If you are not in the mood for making choices, then one of the two Big Fish Four-Course Degustation Set Menu could be an option. Both include an appetiser, entrée and dessert. There’s a choice of either Red Snapper or one of the two non-seafood dish options for your main course. These Degustation Set menus are priced at THB 1,950++ for the Red Snapper Set or 2,600++ for the Wagyu main course Set.
With a choice of three desserts on the Big Fish menu, we simply said yes. Thus removing any laborious end of meal deliberations. Our trio of desserts was served on a long wooden board, making it easy for sharing. The Sorbet Selection featured a scoop each of lime, raspberry, and mango. The raspberry freshness shone through in that sorbet, while the mango and lime each had a deliciously creamy texture of ice cream.
The other two desserts had each taken a classic and reworked them. The traditional French baked custard of Crème Brulee with its burnt sugar top was reinvented as baked cheesecake infused with lemongrass and accompanied by touches of fruit salad, coconut cream and pineapple sorbet.
Finally, a deconstructed Black Forrest Gateau using Valrhona chocolate in its elements. With a white chocolate centrepiece, skewered squares of tasty chocolate brownie, white and dark chocolate soil, freeze-dried cherry crumble and creamy chocolate ice cream. This was a visual treat and a fitting end to our Big Fish food journey.
Currently, Big Fish operates from Thursday to Sunday evenings from 5:00 till 11:00 pm, due to pandemic based restrictions. Reservations are recommended and can be made by calling 032 904 666 or emailing email@example.com. You can visit Big Fish on the web or check out their Facebook page to stay updated with upcoming events and special offers.
Big Fish & Bar, for contemporary dining with a distinct fresh seafood focus, fused with Asian elements, in perhaps one of the best central beachfront locations Hua Hin has to offer.
By Michael Cullen